Behind the Crease: Braden Holtby

holtby head

It’s no surprise to see Braden Holtby back in net today in Dallas considering he is 5-0 in his last five starts with a 2.88 GAA and .918 save percentage. This game will be the toughest yet for this league-leading Capitals team as they face off against a third place Dallas Stars that only trails Washington by 9 points. Both squads enter this game with a win streak but it’s Washington that holds the more impressive streak of five games while Dallas has won their last two. The two teams haven’t met since November 19th of last year when Dallas narrowly defeated Washington 3-2, with backup goaltender Philipp Grubauer in net. It was a late third period goal by Jason Spezza to get Dallas the W.

With Holtby in net this Saturday against the Stars, the Caps look to end their eight-game losing streak against the Stars. It’s almost impossible to look at this team and how far they’ve come over the years and not be impressed. The scary dangerous combination of the league leader in goals Alex Ovechkin, Evgeni Kuznetsov who is fifth in points with 54 and third in plus/minus with +24 and currently third in assists with 39. Not far behind is Nick Backstrom with 34 assists.

You can’t look at all of the facts and tell me you don’t think this is the best team in the NHL, oh and did I mention Braden Holtby leading the league with 35 wins, third in GAA with 2.10, and seventh in save percentage with .927. It’s safe to say head coach Barry Trotz and new GM Brian McLellan have put together an offensive line that continues to be every opposing goaltenders worst nightmare and a defense that just doesn’t allow you to score often. Then of course there’s the “Great Wall of Chinatown” the Holtbeast himself. I don’t think I need to say more given his nickname.

By Timothy Stromberg

 

Leave a Reply